Last year we ran a workshop on designing a Balcony as a place to cook, eat and relax and have a little food forest.
The Main Focus of the design experience was:
- Seeing and evaluating some of the urban permaculture food options: Integrated Wicking pots, Glass-Table Greenhouse, Rocket Kettle, Solar Oven, Indoor Worm Farm, Terrariums with edible flowers, sprouts, micro-greens, bird-cage gardens, Food plants that grow in the shade including Bush Tucker.
- Element Analysis for each suggested component with the aid of our newly developed element-analysis guides, honing the craft of creating meaningful and functional links between the elements.
- Exploring Sectors and building better use of Zoning for the balcony design
- Microclimates in the Balcony Design
- Post Design Analysis through scale/models and visualisation.
Growing some of your own food, even just mint for a cup of tea, can make a big difference to your budget, your environment and your well-being.
Since the workshop, the client has grown 12 trees on their shaded balcony in large wicking pots made from recycled pots.
Designing a Balcony as a place to cook, eat and relax and have a little food forest.
Some of the most valued outcomes was ideas to include movable components such as drawers
Also by conducting a sectors analysis, we were able to identify which areas needed to be kept clear to maintain limited solar access, which areas needed windbreaks
we investigated ways to reflect and direct the limited sunlight.
And the client is keen to incorporate more thermal mass and a way to compost food. The client is now also considering adding a small quail tower.
The focus group applied the permaculture principle of valuing biological resources
Here are two of the designs the teams came up with:
Here is another design using mirrors and ponds to reflect light, climbers on a trellis to provide a privacy screen
The client, Lloyd started with 10 pots made out of large recycled buckets. The buckets originally contained axle grease and were hard to clean, they were cleaned out with grass clippings and bacteria was allowed to help dissolve the grease.